Kauri Cliffs and Cape Kidnappers
American golfers seeking new challenges often cross the Pacific Ocean to play on the majestic sun-belt courses of Australia.
In recent times, New Zealand has become a golf paradise that can compete with the most challenging golf courses in the world. Golfers on the west coast tired of long flights to Scotland for cold, windy golfing and challenged chefs, can now bask in the warm winds and sunshine of New Zealand’s outstanding weather as they challenge themselves on three of the world’s truly breathtaking golf courses.
Kauri Cliffs sits on the north eastern coast of New Zealand’s North Island. Wall Street tycoon Julian Robertson’s opening bid to make New Zealand a golf destination for challenge seeking golfers from around the world. Kauri Cliffs sits majestically upon a spectacular setting overlooking the warm Pacific Ocean and was designed by renowned golf course architect David Harman to be one of the world’s top golf challenges. Kauri Cliffs is a 7,119 yard, par 72 golfing Eden featuring a number of eye-catching gorges that will weaken the knees every time you’re forced to carry the ball over one.
The quality of Kauri Cliffs will become apparent when you step upon the tee of “Cambo”, the 4th hole named after local hero Michael Campbell. “Cambo” is an outstanding risk/reward challenge, with lurking ravine on your right and treacherous bunkers short left. Holes 10 and 11 are par 4s requiring precise approach shots to land in the right spot for your next shot. A birdie is makeable with a properly placed shot to the green. Stay away from the cliffs during the four-hole stretch from 14-17; the wind direction may have you thinking about throwing the clubs into the Pacific, to join the balls you put there, so bring a truck load of balls and maybe a spare set of clubs.
Kauri Cliffs is New Zealand’s playground for west coast golfers preferring to fly less and golf more, a 18 hole challenge that will demand you play through for another 18 holes, every day, as long as you bring enough balls that is.
Once you defeat Kauri Cliffs treacherous holes or if you need a break from knocking balls into the warm Pacific, you can travel across the island to the south eastern tip of New Zealand’s North Island and try your luck on Cape Kidnappers. Ranked No. 41 on Golf Magazines Top 100 Courses in the World, Cape Kidnappers will thrill you if you’re a little intimidated by heights, so you probably want to pack your little pills for this trip.